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Nexus 9 LTE and Official Cases Finally Released

GottaBeMobile - Fri, 12/12/2014 - 23:19

Nexus 9 LTE and Official Cases Finally Released is a post by Cory Gunther from Gotta Be Mobile.

This morning the Nexus 9 tablet with 4G LTE was finally released on T-Mobile, but that isn’t the only good news for prospective buyers of Google’s new tablet. Today the Nexus 9 LTE is available from multiple outlets, and new cases and accessories have been released by HTC.

Back in October Google announced the Nexus 6, Nexus 9, and Nexus Player all with Android 5.0 Lollipop, and since then users have patiently been waiting to get their hands on all of the above. The Nexus 6 and Nexus 9 are available now in some regions, and now those who want a 4G LTE Nexus 9, it’s finally available.

Read: Nexus 9 Setup Guide: 5 Steps to Get Started

Google’s brand new Nexus 9 tablet has been available for just over a month since being released in early November, and until today we had no details regarding when a Nexus 9 LTE would finally arrive. This morning T-Mobile started offering the 4G LTE Nexus 9, and now it’s also available on the Google Play Store. Read on for more details.

The Nexus 9 tablet comes equipped with an 8.9-inch Quad-HD display, dual stereo front facing speakers for excellent sound while watching YouTube or Netflix, a powerful NVIDIA processor for HD gaming, and is an overall excellent tablet. However, some may want 4G LTE connectivity built-in, so that’s what Google’s released today.

You can get the Nexus 9 with 32GB of storage and 4G LTE in both black or white for $599 directly from the Google Play Store, or the same $599 asking price is also listed on T-Mobile.com. One difference being T-Mobile will allow monthly payments, while Google will not.

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There’s no news regarding the limited edition Sand (goldish) color option of the Nexus 9 for now, but it’s still listed on the Google Play Store. It’s worth noting the Nexus 9 LTE on the Play Store isn’t expected to ship until December 19th (at the time of writing) and ship times may slip as more are purchased and stock begins to wind down. Hopefully it arrives in time for Christmas for many holiday shoppers.

At the same time, this morning some official cases and accessories were released for the popular new Nexus 9 too. While Google’s had the flip cover origami cases on the Play Store for over a month, they’ve been out of stock and yet to be released for buyers. However, this morning HTC started offering the Grey and Indigo green option. This is the only color HTC has for sale, and the three others listed by Amazon and Google have yet to be released.

The origami-inspired Nexus 9 Cover features magnetic snap-and-go attachment, a double angle fold and flip-up corner that allows you to take pictures even while it’s on. Buy it here for $39.99.

A few weeks back Google also released the keyboard folio case for the Nexus 9, but we’ve yet to see any other accessories arrive for the company’s latest tablet. There’s plenty of options from third party manufacturers or over on Amazon, but in the meantime, stay tuned as more options should be hitting the Google Play Store soon. Check out our Gift Guide for even more ideas for holiday shopping.

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Nexus 9 LTE and Official Cases Finally Released is a post by Cory Gunther from Gotta Be Mobile.

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Big Price Cuts Arrive for Two Xbox One Games

GottaBeMobile - Fri, 12/12/2014 - 23:06

Big Price Cuts Arrive for Two Xbox One Games is a post by Travis Pope from Gotta Be Mobile.

Microsoft has another big deal on Xbox One games for those who already have one of its Xbox One consoles or plan to purchase one in the future. It’ll sell Destiny and Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare for just $29.99. Xbox 360 users are included in the deal too.

Microsoft revealed the deal this morning even though it’s not scheduled to start until 8 AM tomorrow, December 14th. Both are physical games, meaning that can’t be shared over Xbox Live digitally, however that does mean that once users are done with them they can trade them in at retailers like GameStop towards other hardware and accessories.

The cheap Xbox One games will mark day six of Microsoft’s 12 Deals of Deal promotion. That’s the same sale that let Xbox One buyers choose amongst 12 or so games to include with their console at no additional charge. As they’re digital games, users will have to wait for the games to arrive at their doorstep. Luckily, Microsoft is offering free standard shipping through the holidays. Those who order any item before December 21st should get their order by Christmas.

$29.99 for Call of Duty Advanced Warfare is a very, very good deal. Advanced Warfare arrived on store shelves just this past November. Like previous games in the series, the game is still heavily focused on first-person multiplayer shooting mechanics. Players are still soldiers participating in world-wide conflicts, but it’s much more nuanced than that. Developer Sledgehammer focused on producing a futuristic war simulation. There are robotic shields that travel with players and laser weapons to wreak destruction anywhere and everywhere. Exoskeletons allow for more character customization. Wall running and super strength are available. The game’s campaign features House of Cards actor Kevin Spacey.

Destiny is the massive online role-playing game that debuted back in September. It was made by the same team who developed the first four Halo games for Microsoft. Like all other role-playing games, customizing and building a character is key. Players take on the role as a Guardians roaming the inner Solar System and hunting down evil where ever it may lay. There are story missions, but the game features Raid events that players must team up for before they can earn the best gear for their characters. Destiny is first and foremost a first-person shooter.

Destiny received a new Expansion Pack update this past week called The Dark Below that potential buyers will probably want to pick up after receiving the game. In that expansion users are tasked with taking on an ancient evil in a pit that threatens humanity’s survival. A new raid is included for teams, a new character arrives to assign never-before-seen missions. Tons of new weapons, armor pieces and more are included so users can customize their guardian a bit more. Online multiplayer games like Destiny use a level system to mark progression. The Dark Below Expansion Pack boosts the level Destiny players can rise to 32. Besides the new raid, there is a new co-operative mission and three new maps to compete in multiplayer in. To be clear, the Microsoft Store doesn’t allow users to purchase downloadable content for games. As such, you’ll need to purchase a prepaid card for a local games store or Amazon to pay for The Dark Below. The Dark Below also on sale directly from the Xbox Store. In both cases the expansion costs $19.99. Users can purchase a Destiny Expansion Pass that includes The Dark Below and another expansion coming sometime next year. That costs $34.99.

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A season pass for new Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare content is also available for $49.99. Sledgehammer hasn’t detailed what beyond new maps users who purchase that season pass get. Anyone who purchases an Xbox 360 copy of Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare can upgrade to the Xbox One version free of charge during the holiday season.

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Big Price Cuts Arrive for Two Xbox One Games is a post by Travis Pope from Gotta Be Mobile.

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Samsung Galaxy S6 Rumors: What We Know So Far

GottaBeMobile - Fri, 12/12/2014 - 18:41

Samsung Galaxy S6 Rumors: What We Know So Far is a post by Adam Mills from Gotta Be Mobile.

With the Samsung Galaxy S5 launch in the rear view mirror, we’re starting to see more Samsung Galaxy S6 rumors emerge from the shadows ahead of the device’s highly anticipated launch. With that in mind, we want to take a look at what we’ve seen emerge thus far. Here’s what you need to know, right now, about the Galaxy S6 specs, Galaxy S6 release date and more.

As push further and further away from the Samsung Galaxy S5 release date and closer to the new year, we’re starting to hear more and more about Samsung’s Next Big Thing. The device is supposedly dubbed “Project Zero” behind the scenes and it’s unsurprisingly rumored to be called the Samsung Galaxy S6. After all, it would be the sixth-gen Galaxy S. If the device is real, and it likely is, the Samsung Galaxy S6 will replace the Galaxy S5 as the company’s flagship and take a spot alongside the Galaxy Note 4 as Samsung continues its fight against the iPhone 6 and the onslaught of Android competitors.

In the past few weeks, we’ve started to see some early rumors about the Samsung Galaxy S6 specs, the Samsung Galaxy S6 launch date and the Samsung Galaxy S6 release date. These are early Galaxy S6 rumors but just because they’re early doesn’t mean that they aren’t credible.

Samsung Galaxy S6 rumors are scarce but we’ve started to see credible information emerge as we close in on the end of the year. Thanks to these Galaxy S6 rumors, we know that there’s a very good chance that Samsung will release a brand new Galaxy S6 sometime next year. We’re still early in the rumor cycle but that doesn’t mean that we can’t outline what we think we know so far.

With Galaxy S6 rumors on the rise, we take a look at what we know, so far, about the Samsung Galaxy S6, a device that could lead Samsung into battle against the iPhone 6 in 2015.

Samsung Galaxy S6 Rumors

The first thing that we need to point out is that, right on cue, the Samsung Galaxy S6 rumor mill appears to be in full swing. We almost always start to see Galaxy S rumors emerge at the end of the year as we approach the beginning of a new cycle and that’s precisely what’s happening here with the Samsung Galaxy S6.

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Galaxy S6 rumors, which were virtually non-existent a few weeks ago, have exploded onto the scene in a big way over the past few weeks. Instead of bits and pieces, we’ve seen information regarding every key detail leak out. These are rumors but much of the information comes from trustworthy sources that have been accurate in the past.

Another thing to note. We would not put too much stock into “photos” of Galaxy S6 prototypes or designs. Samsung always clamps down on these kinds of leaks and there’s a good chance that we’ll only know bits and pieces of the story as we approach the inevitable Samsung Galaxy S6 release date. If there is one area that Samsung’s able to keep hush hush it will be the design.

Samsung Galaxy S6 Release Date

It’s still early in the rumor cycle which means that a lot of the key dates for the Samsung Galaxy S6 remain missing in action. The Galaxy S6 is likely still a bunch of moving parts, after all.

A recent report from Korean publication Daum suggested that the Samsung Galaxy S6 release date could land in March. The Galaxy S5 was announced in February and released in April while the Galaxy S4 was announced in March and released in April. A release in March would put the device in the first quarter of the new year to better compete with the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus.

A specific Galaxy S6 release date wasn’t cited though the report states that Samsung Galaxy S6 production will start in February ahead of an earlier release date. While an early Galaxy S6 release date would be ideal for many consumers, this report does not serve as confirmation. March might be the company’s target date for the Galaxy S6 release but the date itself is heavily dependent on testing, certifications and production, all of which can be unpredictable.

It’s not clear when Samsung would announce the device though the company typically puts the launch date weeks ahead of the release date. Samsung used the Mobile World Congress to announce the Galaxy S5 and if it does the same with the Galaxy S6, we could see an announcement in and around March 2nd, or, the start of MWC 2015. Look for Galaxy S6 release date rumors to solidify next year as Samsung itself cements its Samsung Galaxy S6 launch plans.

Samsung Galaxy S6 Specs

Specs are another key component of any high-end smartphone and while rumored Galaxy S6 specs did not live up to the expectations of some prospective buyers, just remember, nothing is set in stone. That said, let’s take a look at what we’ve heard, so far, about the Galaxy S6 specifications.

Galaxy S6 Design

A rumor from SamMobile suggests that Samsung will be looking to reverse the fortunes of its struggling mobile division and build the Galaxy S6 from the ground up. It’s still not clear what that might entail but speculation rests on the company incorporating more premium materials into the build.

For years, Samsung’s released all-plastic Galaxy S flagships. Though with the emergence of metal on the Samsung Galaxy Note 4 and Samsung Galaxy Alpha, we could see Samsung implement new design language on the Galaxy S6. Galaxy S6 design rumors are scarce and as we’ve noted, they could remain scarce in the buildup to the device’s arrival.

The publication also claims that there is another Galaxy S6 model in development but that it’s not an “Edge” version of the Galaxy S6. The Galaxy Note Edge is a curved version of the Samsung Galaxy Note 4 and an earlier rumor suggested that the company might be developing a Galaxy S6 with a curved display. At the moment, that does not appear to be the case.

Galaxy S6 Display

Samsung Galaxy S6 display rumors continue to point to the arrival of a Quad HD resolution display. If true, it would put the device on par with the displays found on the Galaxy Note 4, Galaxy Note Edge, LG G3, and others. Benchmarks have pointed to the feature twice already and credible rumors put a Quad HD screen on the next-gen Galaxy S.

As we’ve noted in our reviews, most recently the Galaxy Note 4 review, Quad HD is not a gimmick. The resolution is an improved over the full HD displays from earlier this year and it delivers gorgeous imagery and text. Samsung’s well known for delivering excellent AMOLED displays and the Galaxy S6’s display has a chance to become one of the best on the market.

The Galaxy S6 display size is currently rumored to be 5.5-inches, or .2-inches smaller than the Galaxy Note 4’s 5.7-inch display. It’s an odd development given that Samsung’s stuck around the 5-inch mark for its past three Galaxy S smartphones but it’s not too shocking.

LG’s G3 comes with a 5.5-inch display but thanks to thin bezels, the device isn’t a monstrosity. In fact, it’s only a little bit bigger than the Samsung Galaxy S5. So, if the Galaxy S6 does come with a bigger display, it doesn’t necessarily mean that the overall size of the device is going to take a huge jump up.

Galaxy S6 Camera

Early Galaxy S6 rumors suggested that Samsung was trying to decide between a 16MP camera and a 20MP camera. The two alleged Galaxy S6 benchmarks that we’ve seen include both sensors so it appears that the company is still toying with both. Optical Image Stabilization, a feature found on the Galaxy Note 4 and iPhone 6 Plus is also rumored to be in the mix. The front facing camera will supposedly be a 5MP camera.

Galaxy S6 Processor

Samsung always upgrades its processors year after year so it’s not surprising to see Galaxy S6 rumors point to two next-gen chips. Right now, we’re hearing that the Galaxy S6 will come with either a 64-bit Exynos 7 Octa processor in-house chip or a Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 processor. Both would offer enhanced performance.

A rumor suggested that problems with the Snapdragon 810 would lead to delays but Qualcomm has denied this saying that the Snapdragon 810 is still on track for the first half of next year, a window that should also include the Galaxy S6 launch date.

Galaxy S6 Storage

Galaxy S6 rumors suggest that we could see three storage models including a 32GB model, 64GB model, and 128GB model. This would match what Apple’s done with the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. U.S. carriers have a tendency to avoid larger models if there is a microSD card slot on board so there’s no guarantee that all three models will make it to the shores of the United States.

Galaxy S6 Carriers

Finally, we’ve seen Samsung Galaxy S6 carriers rumored and they are said to include the usual suspects AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, U.S. Cellular, and Verizon. SamMobile laid out the supposed model numbers for those models, and several others, and so it looks like the Samsung Galaxy S6 release will land for major carriers in the United States in the months ahead.

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Samsung Galaxy S6 Rumors: What We Know So Far is a post by Adam Mills from Gotta Be Mobile.

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Nexus 7 Lollipop Review

GottaBeMobile - Fri, 12/12/2014 - 17:54

Nexus 7 Lollipop Review is a post by Josh Smith from Gotta Be Mobile.

The Nexus 7 Lollipop update delivers a completely new look to the Nexus 7, reviving the year old Nexus 7 2013 that remained one of the most popular Android tablets of the last year. Google delivered the Android 5.0 Lollipop update in November and just recently released Android 5.0.1 on the Nexus 7.

This is our Nexus 7 Lollipop review, for the 2013 Nexus 7 running Android 5.0.1. We will share our impressions on the performance of  the update and the new Android 5.0 features that Google includes with Lollipop specifically on the Nexus 7 tablet.

Hopefully this will help you answer the question, “Is the Nexus 7 Android 5.0 update worth installing?”

Over the past several weeks nexus 7 users ran into a variety of Android 5.0 problems. Android 5.0.1 fixes some of these and for the most part, Lollipop is running smoothly on our Nexus 7. We are enjoying the new Material Design, enhanced Notifications, lock screen improvements and other great features.

Read our Nexus 7 Lollipop review.

Our Nexus 7 Lollipop update did not arrive until this week, but after spending a week using the Android 5.0.1 update on the Nexus 7 there are some small problems that we encountered at the start which are no longer a problem thanks to app updates or simply things starting to work again.

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The overall goal of this Nexus 7 Android 5.0 Lollipop review is to provide you with the information you need to decide if you should install this update on  your Nexus 7 2013.

Nexus 7 Lollipop Review

I’ve been using the Nexus 7 Lollipop update heavily for the last week, switching this tablet into my daily use more than normal, in place of an iPad Air. The overall Nexus 7 Android 5.0 experience will vary from user to user, depending on the apps and overall usage patterns.

I connect Gmail to the Nexus 7, use Chrome for browsing and play a few games, but I am not using the Nexus 7 2013 with an Exchange account nor do I use any specialized apps for work, outside of those found on Google Play. This is a general guide to how the Android 5.0 Lollipop update handles on the Nexus 7 2013. Your overall experience may vary depending on the apps you use with your Nexus 7.

Apps

Thanks to testing various Android apps I keep nearly 100 apps on the Nexus 7. Of those, I regularly use 30 or so apps for entertainment, light productivity and other activities. The core Android apps from Google and many entertainment apps are used every day, while others less so.

After a rocky start to some of the Android 5.0 apps, including Google Play Movies crashing with an unexplained error, the Nexus 7 apps are running smoothly. I am now able to use the tablet to watch movies over Google Play, including streaming Gravity on WiFi.

Using Gmail, Calendar and Hangouts to plan and communicate for work was a breeze with no crashes or hang ups. Google Play music streamed from my library without any problems and third-party apps like Netflix and multiple games performed well.

I ran into an app icon problem right after updating, but after replacing the home screen app shortcuts everything is working as it should.

If you have problems with apps on Android 5.0 or Android 5.0.1 you should make sure that all of your apps are up to date. You may get a new design, and most of the time you will get multiple bug fixes that improve performance of the apps.

Apps and overall performance are good on the Nexus 7 2013 Lollipop update.

Android Lollipop Battery Life

The Nexus 7 2013 battery life is very good on Android 5.0.1. Over the past year I’ve complained about the standby battery performance of the Nexus 7 and other Nexus devices. Unlike the iPad, if I leave a Nexus device running Android 4.4 sit for a few days the battery is often dead.

After updating the Nexus 7 to Android 5.0 Lollipop the battery life is better in standby. During use I can still watch a movie and play a game with plenty of battery life to spare and there is no fast battery drain. The Nexus 7 charges at a normal speed after the update as well.

If you are sick of poor standby battery life on the Nexus 7, this is an essential update.

WiFi & Bluetooth

Connectivity works great on our Nexus 7 2013.

With every update there is a chance that WiFi and Bluetooth will break, that is not a problem with my Nexus 7 2013. The WiFi signal connects fine to my home network, to a personal hotspot and to networks outside of my home. The device maintains the connection while watching videos and streaming music.

The Nexus 7 Bluetooth support is also working as expected. The Nexus 7 pairs easily to Bluetooth headphones and maintains the connection. This is not a LTE model, so I cannot test that connectivity or the ability to use the Nexus 7 as a personal hotspot.

Bugs & Issues

My Nexus 7 Lollipop update experience is very smooth, but there are many users complaining about Nexus 7 Android 5.0 problems on the Google forums. While my experience is good and many other users are not reporting problems, it is clear that Google still has work to do. The Android 5.o.1 update fixes some bugs, but there are still problems.

Some users experience problems installing Android 5.0.1 on the Nexus 7, and there are a scattering of other issues. None of these are present on my Nexus 7, but again these tend to be hit or miss.

Speed

The Nexus 7 Lollipop update is rock solid on speed. There is no slow down from Android 4.4 KitKat and in some places the tablet feels even a little bit smoother. This may be a side effect of a better looking design tricking me into thinking it is new, or the animations simply being faster. Whatever the cause I am not experiencing any slow downs or hang ups with the Nexus 7 2013 on Android 5.0.1.

Is the Nexus 7 Lollipop Update Worth Installing Now?

For most users, the Nexus 7 Lollipop update is worth installing.

If you have the Nexus 7 2013 and are already on Android 5.0, then you should definitely install the Android 5.0.1 update.

For users coming from KitKat to Lollipop on the Nexus 7 2013 this is a bigger decision to make. Based on my experience with Android 5.0.1 on the Nexus 7 this an update that is worth installing and one that I would install again. There are some problems impacting other users, so keep that in mind and if you aren’t comfortable, wait another week to see if any major problems emerge as part of a wider trend impacting users or to see if Google offers an Android 5.0.2 update.

I am still waiting for the update to arrive on the Nexus 7 2012, so I cannot weigh in on updating that older model yet.

.gbmslideshow { border-width: 0px; } #gbmslideshow { border-width: 0px; } Android 5.0 vs Android 4.4 Walkthrough: What’s New in LollipopAndroid 5.0 vs Android 4.4 - Lockscreen 1 / 13

 With Android 5.0 Lollipop Google has slightly improved the lockscreen. There's now a shortcut to the dialer by swiping left to right, and notifications are more useful and interactive. Shown right on the lockscreen they can be swiped away, slide down to expand, or double tap to instantly unlock right into that app or notification. Everything is simple and smooth, and we still have full-screen album artwork on the lockscreen while playing music.

The quick shortcuts and improved notifications will come in handy for all users.

1 / 13

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Nexus 7 Lollipop Review is a post by Josh Smith from Gotta Be Mobile.

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5 Best Sprint Phones [December, 2014]

GottaBeMobile - Fri, 12/12/2014 - 00:03

5 Best Sprint Phones [December, 2014] is a post by Adam Mills from Gotta Be Mobile.

If you’re looking to buy a new Sprint phone this month, you have a tough decision on your hands because the Now Network’s lineup is full of outstanding devices. With that in mind, we want to help those of you that need help deciding on a new device. Here, we take a look at the devices we think are the five best Sprint phones money can buy in the month of December.

Over the past year, we’ve seen U.S. carriers release several flagship smartphones. The Samsung Galaxy S5 and HTC One M8 set the tone early in the year but more recently its been devices like the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, LG G3, Samsung Galaxy Note 4, and Moto X that have hit Sprint’s shelves in an attempt to lure people in.

That kind of choice can present problems for anyone, particularly for those that aren’t caught up with the latest devices. Many of Sprint’s smartphones share similar hardware and many offer similar software features under different names. Seeking out the best smartphones can be a difficult assignment and that’s why we’re here to help.

We are constantly bombarded with questions about the best Sprint phones money can buy. There are a number of different devices that we could recommend, the carrier’s shelves are full of solid choices, but we want to narrow things down a bit and take a look at what we consider to be the top five best Sprint phones available.

These devices represent the devices that we’d recommend to friends and family. And while our list may differ from yours, these are the devices that Gotta Be Mobile editors have selected for recognition this month. We feel like the devices listed here deliver the best, all-around package for this month and this month alone.

With that in mind, here are the five best Sprint phones for December, 2014.

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.gbmslideshow { border-width: 0px; } #gbmslideshow { border-width: 0px; } iPhone 61 / 5

Back in September, Apple released the iPhone 6 to replace the iPhone 5s as its high-end iPhone flagship. Unsurprisingly, iPhone 6 is considered, by many, to be one of the best smartphones on the plane. That's debatable though the iPhone 6 is a device that you should look at before settling on one of Sprint's smartphones this month.

Apple's new iPhone 6 comes with an assortment of top notch features including a 4.7-inch Retina HD display, a speedy A8 processor, a fantastic rear camera, a metal design, Touch ID fingerprint technology, tons of storage space, and the company's brand new iOS 8 operating system.

The iPhone 6 isn't cheap at Sprint, it starts at $199.99 on-contract, but those that buy into the new iPhone will be getting one of the best phones on the market and one that should last three years or more thanks to new iOS software updates. Apple tends to keep iPhones updated for three years before kicking them to the curb.

1 / 5

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5 Best Sprint Phones [December, 2014] is a post by Adam Mills from Gotta Be Mobile.

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5 Best T-Mobile Phones [December, 2014]

GottaBeMobile - Thu, 12/11/2014 - 23:19

5 Best T-Mobile Phones [December, 2014] is a post by Adam Mills from Gotta Be Mobile.

Those of you looking to buy a new T-Mobile phone this month might run into some trouble because the carrier’s lineup is full of outstanding devices. With that in mind, we want to help those of you that need help deciding on a new device. Here, we take a look at the devices we think are the five best T-Mobile phones money can buy in the month of December.

Over the past year, we’ve seen U.S. carriers release a number of big name, big time smartphones. The Samsung Galaxy S5 and HTC One M8 set the tone early in the year but more recently its been devices like the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, LG G3, Samsung Galaxy Note 4, and Moto X that have lured in consumers looking for a brand new device on T-Mobile’s UnCarrier network.

That kind of choice can present problems for anyone, particularly for those that aren’t caught up with the latest devices. Many of T-Mobile’s smartphones share similar hardware and many offer similar software features under different names. Seeking out the best smartphones can be a difficult assignment and that’s why we’re here to help.

We are constantly bombarded with questions about the best T-Mobile phones money can buy. There are a number of different devices that we could recommend, the carrier’s shelves are full of solid choices, but we want to narrow things down a bit and take a look at what we consider to be the top five best T-Mobile phones available.

These devices represent the devices that we’d recommend to friends and family. And while our list may differ from yours, these are the devices that Gotta Be Mobile editors have selected for recognition this month. We feel like the devices listed here deliver the best, all-around package for this month and this month alone.

With that in mind, here are the five best T-Mobile phones for December, 2014.

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.gbmslideshow { border-width: 0px; } #gbmslideshow { border-width: 0px; } Moto X1 / 5

The new Moto X 2014, also known as Moto X, delivers an excellent all-around package. In our opinion, it's one of the best Android phones ever made and one of the best T-Mobile phones you can buy right now.

The Moto X 2014 offers an excellent design, a beautiful display, tons of of horsepower, a good camera, and extremely useful software. The device is essentially a Nexus smartphone with some nice Motorola features attached. If you or a loved one likes vanilla Android, this is a phone to look at in December

Unlike some of these phones, the Moto X is cheap on-contract. That low price should put it near the top of your shopping list during the holidays. That or the fact that its one of the best smartphones ever made. You need to have this device on your radar if you're thinking about going with a T-Mobile phone this month.

1 / 5

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5 Best T-Mobile Phones [December, 2014] is a post by Adam Mills from Gotta Be Mobile.

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Nexus 6 Release Continues for US Buyers

GottaBeMobile - Thu, 12/11/2014 - 17:59

Nexus 6 Release Continues for US Buyers is a post by Cory Gunther from Gotta Be Mobile.

The Motorola-made Google Nexus 6 smartphone is finally becoming more readily available to buyers in the United States. An actual Nexus 6 release date was never formally announced, as Google is allowing each of the five major carriers to release the new flagship smartphone throughout the month. And this week two more options have arrived.

The impressive Nexus 6 was announced back on October 15th along with the Nexus 9 tablet, a Nexus Player, and the completely redesigned and improved Android 5.0 Lollipop software update. The release has been slow from carriers, and this week US Cellular joined three other carriers, and now Motorola.com has both colors in stock again.

Read: Nexus 6 Setup Guide: 5 Steps to get Started

Those looking to get a Nexus 6 have probably experienced a few problems trying to find the always out of stock and hard to find smartphone. It’s available now from AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint, and this week also from US Cellular, making Verizon the only carrier without a release date. More stock arrived today, so read on for more details.

This week the Nexus 6 went up for sale from US Cellular in both the 32GB and 64GB option (only T-Mobile had the 64GB before) and they’re also offering the white color variant. All other carriers stateside only have the blue Nexus 6, for whatever reason.

The Nexus 6 release hasn’t been as smooth as many expected. Pre-orders sold out in minutes, stock has been depleted for weeks on end, and Google’s been trying to add more to the Google Play Store every Wednesday or Thursday for weeks giving prospective buyers a chance to get their new flagship smartphone.

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If you are still trying to get your hands on Google and Motorola’s new Nexus 6, Motorola.com has more stock as of this morning. Offering both the Blue and White option in both 32 and 64GB of storage. We’re seeing the 64GB option go in and out of stock, but the 32GB is still readily available as we speak. So you better act fast.

As you can see above, Motorola.com has both colors available for those interested. Previously only the Google Play Store had the white color option, but now it’s available from US Cellular and the Motorola online store.

As a refresher here’s the specs of the new Nexus 6, as well as a link to our full review for those interesting in buying this premium well-rounded Android smartphone.

Nexus 6 Specs

  • 5.96-inch 2560 x 1440 Quad-HD Display
  • 2.7 GHz Quad-Core Snapdragon 805 processor with 3GB of RAM
  • 32GB/64GB internal storage
  • Android 5.0 Lollipop
  • 13 Megapixel camera with OIS, 2 MP front camera (4k video capture)
  • Dual Ring Flash similar to Moto X
  • Dual Front-facing speakers
  • Aluminum frame around device like the new Moto X 2014
  • 3,220 mAh battery

The Nexus 6 currently runs Android 5.0 Lollipop, Google’s completely revamped update to the Android operating system, but as of yesterday Google started pushing a bug fixing Android 5.0.1 update for users. This means that many of the bugs and issues from the general release have been squashed, and now is the perfect time to buy the smartphone.

Read: Nexus 6 Review

As it stands today the Nexus 6 is available from T-Mobile, AT&T, Sprint, US Cellular, the Google Play Store, Best Buy, Motorola and a few other sources. Missing from that list is Verizon Wireless, who is the only carrier that not only isn’t offering the phone yet, but have revealed zero details regarding when buyers can expect it to arrive.

We’ll keep an eye out for more details, Nexus 6 deals, and more stock as the device continues to pick up steam and the release smooths out for prospective buyers.

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Nexus 6 Release Continues for US Buyers is a post by Cory Gunther from Gotta Be Mobile.

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iOS 8.1.2: 5 Things iPhone & iPad Users Need to Know

GottaBeMobile - Thu, 12/11/2014 - 17:57

iOS 8.1.2: 5 Things iPhone & iPad Users Need to Know is a post by Adam Mills from Gotta Be Mobile.

Apple’s new iOS 8.1.2 update is here and it replaces the iOS 8.1.1 update that Apple rolled out several weeks ago to patch up iOS 8 problems. With iOS 8.1.2 still fresh in the minds of iPhone and iPad users around the world, we want to take a look at what we think are the five most important things to know about Apple’s brand new iOS 8 update.

Months ago, Apple rolled out its iOS 8.0 update for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. The new update replaced the iOS 7 update from last year though unlike the iOS 7 update, it did not deliver massive design changes to Apple’s mobile products. Instead, the iOS 8 update builds upon the foundation left behind by the iOS 7 update adding new features, enhancements and fixes for iOS 7 problems.

Apple’s iOS 8 update also delivered iOS 8 problems to iPhone and iPad users. Over the past couple of months, Apple’s worked to fix those lingering issues. First, the company pushed out iOS 8.0.1. Then, Apple rolled out iOS 8.0.2. After a stint in the beta program, Apple pushed out its iOS 8.1 update that was chock full of fixes and introduced Apple Pay to iPhone 6 users. A few weeks ago, Apple released iOS 8.1.1 to tackle some of the ongoing issues and earlier this week, Apple replaced iOS 8.1.1 with its iOS 8.1.2 release.

The company’s iOS 8.1.2 is a tiny update for iPhone and iPad but it comes with bug fixes for iOS 8 problems which makes it a big update for those dealing with issues on iOS 8.1.1 and below.

Over the past few days, we’ve relayed a number of iOS 8.1.2 details to iPhone and iPad users and today, we want to round all of those up and give you a look at the big picture. Today, we want to take a look at the five things you need to know, right now, about the new iOS 8.1.2 update for Apple’s iPhone, iPad and iPod touch.

Early iOS 8.1.2 Review

The first thing you need to know is that we’ve taken an early and extensive look at the iOS 8.1.2 update on several key devices including the iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, iPhone 5, iPad Air, and iPad mini. We realize the iOS 8.1.2 update is a small update but as we’ve pointed out many times, small updates have the potential to have a big impact on the performance of your device. That’s why we offer feedback to our readers.

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See how iOS 8.1.2 performs on the iPhone 6 Plus.

The goal of our early reviews is to provide you with early feedback about Apple’s update. The impressions will hopefully help steer you in the right direction as you try and decide if the software is worth installing right now. We’ll return with full reviews at a later date so for now, these reviews stand as our initial, in depth feedback about Apple’s iOS 8 upgrade.

They are a great starting point for those of you dealing with iOS 8 problems and those of you who are finally thinking about making the move from iOS 7 to iOS 8.

iOS 8.1.2 Problems

iOS 8.1.2 is a small bug fixer aimed at crushing iOS 8 problems. And while that might be the case, remember what we said. Smaller updates always have the potential to negatively impact performance and it looks like iOS 8.1.2 problems are causing trouble for some iPhone and iPad users in the days after the software’s release.

iOS 8.1.2 users are complaining about various battery life issues, issues with messages, the usual array of Wi-Fi problems, problems with the front-facing camera, installation issues, problems with email, and so on and so forth. Users are reporting a series of issues but there are a few things that iPhone and iPad users need to keep in mind.

We haven’t seen any widespread hero level issues wrecking havoc on devices. What we mean by that is, we haven’t seen any major issues affecting a majority of iPhones and iPads. The issues that are being reported all seem to be fairly isolated. We found iOS 8.1.2 to be very stable but there’s always a chance that it could deliver some odd bugs to your phone or tablet.

The other thing to keep in mind is that there probably won’t be another iOS 8.1 update any time soon. From the look of things, there’s no need. iOS 8.1.2 is stable on our devices and we aren’t seeing a large volume of complaints after the upgrade. Yes, there are some people having iOS 8 issues but the numbers are getting thinner by the update.

Point is, if you are having issues, you can’t depend on Apple.

There Are Fixes for iOS 8.1.2 Problems

If you are dealing with iOS 8.1.2 problems, know that we’ve put together a list of the most common issues that affect iPhone and iPad users in the aftermath of iOS updates. It doesn’t cover every single iOS 8.1.2 problem that we’ve seen emerge over the past three days but it does offer potential fixes for problems with battery life, Wi-Fi and more.

Those of you who are dealing with iOS 8.1.2 problems would be wise to use those fixes as a starting point. We say starting point because there’s no guarantee that they’re going to work for you. Still, they’re worth a shot if you’ve already encountered iOS 8.1.2 problems or if you encounter an issue at any point down the road.

iOS 8.1.2 Jailbreak

Those of you that wish to jailbreak your iPhone or iPad can do so thanks to the Taig jailbreak for iOS 8.1.2. There was some concern at the beginning but the developers behind the jailbreak have released the software for those that want to take advantage of Cydia and the customization that it provides.

We’ve put together a how to for those that are interested though we recommend doing research before investing time into the jailbreak. There are still plenty of reasons to perform an iOS 8 jailbreak but you’ll want to weigh all of the pros and all of the cons before taking the plunge. Especially, if you’re thinking about jailbreaking your main device.

You Don’t Need to Update to iOS 8.1.2 Right Now

Finally, know that some of you might be better off upgrading to the iOS 8.1.2 update today. Those of you that are dealing with issues in iOS 8.1.1 and below should seriously consider making the move. There are, however, some reasons why you might want to avoid the iOS 8.1.2 update right now. Often, we hear from people that got way too excited about the release of an iOS update and installed an update blindly, only to run into unforeseen issues.

We’ve put together a list of reasons why you might want to consider holding off on the iOS 8.1.2 update, at least for right now, and perhaps return to it at a later date. Yes, it’s a small update but once again, you don’t know how the software is going to settle on your iPhone or iPad. For many of you, installing today is not going to be worth the risk.

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iOS 8.1.2: 5 Things iPhone & iPad Users Need to Know is a post by Adam Mills from Gotta Be Mobile.

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How to Use the Galaxy Note 4 with Gloves

GottaBeMobile - Thu, 12/11/2014 - 00:33

How to Use the Galaxy Note 4 with Gloves is a post by Cory Gunther from Gotta Be Mobile.

Winter is finally here and soon Christmas and the coldest months will arrive. All the while it will be snowing for days and freezing cold. If you’ve ever tried to use your smartphone or Galaxy device with gloves, it doesn’t quite work. Here we’ll explain how to use your Galaxy Note 4 with gloves. Samsung recently introduced a mode specifically to allow users to handle their smartphones even whilst wearing gloves.

Samsung’s Galaxy Note 4 has been available for a little while now, and with more and more owners enjoying the large 5.7-inch device and everything the Note 4 has to offer, we’ve been getting a lot of questions about certain tasks.

Read: 51 Galaxy Note 4 Tips & Tricks

Touchscreen devices don’t play well with gloves, and as a result many of Samsung’s recent devices have a feature to curb this exact problem. If you’ve ever been to NYC or Chicago in February you know what we mean. Taking gloves off for a few moments to send a text is never fun, and Samsung has a quick and simple setting to enable you to keep them on, and those typing fingers warm. Read on for the details.

Of course there are a lot of different options here, and many accessory sites sell gloves that are built and designed specifically to work with touchscreen devices like our iPad or Galaxy Note 4. However, many are cheap gloves or simply too expensive. So instead, just enable a feature in settings to make this extremely easy, and work with any gloves you already own.

It gets cold in the winter, we get it, and taking your gloves off to reply to a text isn’t ideal. So keep those gloves on and follow our simple instructions below.

Advertisement (adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({}); Use the Galaxy Note 4 with Gloves

The Samsung Galaxy S4, Galaxy S5, and even the Galaxy Note 3 all have a similar feature, so this isn’t anything new for existing users. However, if you’ve newly acquired the Galaxy Note 4 and are experiencing problems now the winter months are here, lets fix it in less than 30 seconds.

Instructions:

It’s really quite easy. Samsung introduced a simple feature in the settings menu that will allow the smartphone to crank up the display sensitivity to a level you wouldn’t usually use, one that will recognize touch input through thick gloves. The option is the same for most Galaxy devices, but in a slightly different place with the redesigns to the Note 4 software.

“Increase Touch Sensitivity” is the setting we’ll be searching for today. Users with the Note 4 will tap the menu button (left of the dedicated home button) and head into system settings. You’ll also be able to tap the Gear-shaped settings icon in the app tray to quickly access the device settings menu. From here you’ll choose the second column listed as “Device” and head into “Display” settings.

Settings > Device > Display > Increase touch sensitivity

All you’ll need to do is head into the display settings and scroll to the bottom. The last option is a checkbox to increase the touchscreen sensitivity. This cranks it up to a high level, something you won’t want to keep enabled on a day to day basis, but if you’re out in the cold it will be high enough that the screen will recognize touch input even while you’re wearing gloves.

That’s it and you’re all done. The touch controls aren’t perfect, or extremely responsive, but it sure beats having to take off your gloves and risk some frostbite. Be sure to keep this feature disabled during daily activities, and only use it when you need to, as it could affect battery life or have you pocket dialing on accident if the user doesn’t have a lockscreen passcode or security.

Now enjoy that Note 4 out in the cold, even while wearing gloves.

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How to Use the Galaxy Note 4 with Gloves is a post by Cory Gunther from Gotta Be Mobile.

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Galaxy S6 Release Date: Early Look at What to Expect

GottaBeMobile - Thu, 12/11/2014 - 00:05

Galaxy S6 Release Date: Early Look at What to Expect is a post by Adam Mills from Gotta Be Mobile.

It’s that time of the year and Samsung Galaxy S6 rumors and Galaxy S6 release date details are starting to trickle out as Samsung and its rivals shift to to their next-generation of smartphones. With rumors swirling, we take an early look at what we expect from the upcoming and highly anticipated Samsung Galaxy S6 release date.

As push further and further away from the Samsung Galaxy S5 release date and closer to the new year, we’re starting to hear more and more about Samsung’s Next Big Thing also known as its new Galaxy S. The device is supposedly dubbed “Project Zero” behind the scenes and it’s a device is rumored to be called the Samsung Galaxy S6.

Over the past few weeks, we’ve started to see some early rumors about the Samsung Galaxy S6 specs, the Galaxy S6 launch date and the Samsung Galaxy S6 release date. If it’s real, and it likely is, the Samsung Galaxy S6 will replace the Galaxy S5 as the company’s flagship and take a spot alongside the Galaxy Note 4 as Samsung continues its fight against the iPhone 6 and the onslaught of Android competitors.

Samsung Galaxy S6 rumors are scarce but we’ve started to see credible information emerge as we close in on the end of the year. Thanks to these Galaxy S6 rumors, we know that there’s a very good chance that Samsung will release a brand new device sometime in the new year and unsurprisingly, that has people excited. The Galaxy S6 will almost certainly be a high-end phone and perhaps, one of the more impressive devices of 2015.

In the build up to the Samsung Galaxy S6 launch date, we’ve made some bold predictions. We recently took a look at what we expect from a number of Galaxy S6 details including its specs and today, we want to focus in on the elusive Samsung Galaxy S6 release date. These predictions are based on rumors, based on history and based the feelings housed in our gut.

Here’s an early look at what to expect from the Samsung Galaxy S6 release date.

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The first thing we expect is a series of Samsung Galaxy S6 release date rumors. We’ve already seen Galaxy S6 release date rumors emerge and we expect to see several more arrive before Samsung is able to send out press invites to an event.

Now, the thing to keep in mind when it comes to Samsung release date rumors is that they are just that, rumors. Remember, this is also smartphone release that we’re talking about here so there are a ton of moving parts. In other words, while Samsung might be targeting a certain window or date, it’s always possible that the device could hit a snag in the development process that causes it to get delayed.

In the past, we’ve not only seen a ton of rumors emerge but we’ve seen conflicting rumors appear in the days and weeks ahead of the actual announcement. Whether this is a product of controlled leaks or not is unknown but we almost always see rumors that are off-base.

Thus far, we’ve heard that the Samsung Galaxy S6 release date will arrive earlier than this year’s Galaxy S5 release in April. Specifics were not provided and it should be taken with a grain of salt. Just like the other Samsung Galaxy S6 rumors that will undoubtedly emerge in the days ahead.

Expect the most credible Galaxy S release date rumors to emerge in 2015 after Samsung’s finalized some of the details.

Samsung Galaxy S6 Release Date Confirmed Early

You should expect the Samsung Galaxy S6 release date to get confirmed in advance. Samsung typically hosts Unpacked events to bring attention to its flagships and we see no reason why the company would ditch that process now. Over the years, Samsung’s gotten better about providing accurate, and specific, information about release dates and we expect to see the Galaxy S6 release date, a specific one or at least a very specific window, confirmed on stage.

Galaxy S6 Release Within Weeks of Announcement

Expect the Samsung Galaxy S6 release date to land within weeks of the initial announcement. Samsung’s also done a good job of closing the gap between announcement and release and instead of waiting for several months, we now typically wait only a few weeks for the device to arrive. The Galaxy Note Edge is an exception but it’s a concept and not a flagship smartphone.

Galaxy S6 Release Date in 1H 2015

As for the specific Samsung Galaxy S6 release date itself, that’s extremely hard to nail down. We do not expect the device to arrive at any point this year, probably a given to many of you at this point, and we do not expect Samsung to wait any longer than the late part of spring to get this device on shelves. If it waits, it gets way too close to Apple’s WWDC in the summer and the eventual release of a new iPhone 6.

We’re confident that Samsung will get the Galaxy S6 out in the first half of the year per usual and we would expect to see it arrive in its usual window, somewhere between March and May. Companies like Samsung seem to be sticking to a year cycle with their flagship models and with the Galaxy S5’s first birthday coming in April, and Galaxy S4 users coming off contract next year, we should see a new Galaxy S6 within the first six months of the year.

Staggered Release Based on Region

Samsung typically does not release its flagships all at once. Instead, the company takes a staggered approach, releasing the devices over the course of several weeks as it works to keep a steady supply flowing to key regions like the United States. We’ve seen the company take a staggered approach with just about every recent Galaxy flagship and we see no reason why it would stray next year, especially if we see a shift to new design materials. Samsung clearly had problems producing the Galaxy Note 4, which boasts a design that features both plastic and metal.

Look for Samsung to focus in on the key battlegrounds like the United Kingdom, United States, Korea, China, and Japan first and then release it in lesser regions as time goes on. Even Apple, the master of the supply chain, staggers its iPhone releases so there’s little chance that Samsung releases the Galaxy S6 in 100+ regions in one day.

We fully expect U.S. carriers to release the Galaxy S6 in and around the same time, within weeks of each other at the very most, as they look to pry customers away from one another.

Early Hands-on Time

We expect Samsung to provide consumers with a way to go hands-on with the Samsung Galaxy S6 ahead of its release date. Similar to what the company did with the new Samsung Galaxy Note 4.

With the Samsung Galaxy Note 4, Samsung allowed select Samsung Experience shops inside Best Buy stores to put the device out early. If Samsung does make massive changes, and its release does land several weeks out from the announcement, we’d expect the company to allow consumers to try it out early to get a feel for the changes.

If it does do this, don’t expect it to be widespread. It’s always very controlled and very limited. The public Galaxy S4 hands-on after its Broadway announcement at the Radio City Music Hall was this way, so was the Galaxy Note 4’s early access.

Tons of Retailers

Look for the Samsung Galaxy S6 to emerge at a ton of retailers in the United States and around the world. This is a flagship smartphone, an Android one at that, and flagship Android phones usually find a way inside popular retailers like Amazon, Walmart and Target.

This is Samsung we’re talking about here and that means that there’s a very good chance there will be some kind of tie-in with Best Buy as well. The companies are close partners and we expect to see Samsung leverage Best Buy’s Samsung Experience shops during the Galaxy S6 launch.

Familiar Galaxy S6 Carriers

The Samsung Galaxy S6 will almost certainly come to an array of carriers all over the world including top carriers in the United States. For years, AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, Verizon and U.S. Cellular have offered Samsung’s flagship Galaxy S models and we doubt that they will stop carrying one of the most popular devices in the world.

We also expect the Galaxy S6, unlike the Galaxy Note 4, to arrive for an assortment of smaller carriers. Carriers like C Spire Wireless and Cricket don’t offer the Galaxy Note but they almost always offer the Galaxy S.

Familiar Samsung Galaxy S6 Price

With the Samsung Galaxy Note 4 priced at $299.99 on-contract and the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus sitting at $199.99 and $299.99 respectively, we expect Samsung to continue to offer the Galaxy S6, at least the base model, at $199.99. There are rumors that suggest that we could see multiple storage variants and if that’s the case, we’d expect the larger models to be $50 more expensive.

We also expect some retailers to offer Galaxy S6 deals in the days and weeks after its release. We haven’t seen many Galaxy Note 4 deals emerge as of yet but the Galaxy S is a different beast. It’s more popular and there’s more incentive for retailers to drop the price down to beat their rivals in sales. Look for Galaxy S6 price drops soon after it hits shelves.

Huge Samsung Galaxy S5 Deals

We also expect the Galaxy S5 price and the Galaxy Note 4 price to drop when the Galaxy S6 arrives. So if you’re thinking about buying the Galaxy Note 4 or if you’re not interested in what the Galaxy S6 has to offer, we expect both devices to be bargains come Galaxy S6 launch. Retailers will need to make them more attractive and a price drop is their way of doing that once a new flagship arrives.

Loads of Galaxy S6 Accessories

Finally, expect a ton of Galaxy S6 accessories to be available in and around the Galaxy S6 release date. This is one of the more popular brands on the planet and thus, there’s a ton of inventive for accessory manufacturers to produce a boat load of accessories. Samsung will likely have some accessories of its own on sale and we wouldn’t be surprised if the company conjured up something new.

The Galaxy Note 4 got the Gear VR, the Galaxy S5 arrived alongside new wearables and we expect the Galaxy S6 to be accompanied by a new accessory, maybe some kind of wearable to take on the Apple Watch that’s expected to arrive in early 2015.

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Galaxy S6 Release Date: Early Look at What to Expect is a post by Adam Mills from Gotta Be Mobile.

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iOS 8.1.2 on iPad mini 2: Impressions & Performance

GottaBeMobile - Wed, 12/10/2014 - 18:44

iOS 8.1.2 on iPad mini 2: Impressions & Performance is a post by Adam Mills from Gotta Be Mobile.

Yesterday, Apple released an iOS 8.1.2 update that’s aimed at some of the iOS 8 problems that users have faced in the weeks after the release of the company’s brand new operating system. With the iOS 8.1.2 release here, we take a look at how the iOS 8.1.2 update is performing on iPad mini 2. This is our early iPad Air iOS 8.1.1 review.

Earlier this year, Apple released an iOS 8.0 update to replace last year’s massive iOS 7 upgrade. iOS 8 did not bring sweeping changes to the iOS operating system for iPhone and iPad. Instead, it built on what the iOS 7 update left behind delivering some brand new features of its own including massive changes to the Messages app, notifications and more.

Apple’s iOS 8.0 update also delivered a number of iOS 8 problems, problems that the company has been trying to fix for several months now. First, it rolled out an iOS 8.0.1 update for the iPhone and iPad. A day later, the company pushed out iOS 8.0.2 to fix iOS 8.0.1 problems. A few weeks later, the company shifted to the iOS 8.1 update. A few weeks after that, iPhone and iPad users moved to iOS 8.1.1.

Yesterday, Apple replaced the iOS 8.1.1 update with a new iOS 8.1.2 update. The iOS 8.1.2 update is small and delivers fixes including one for a ringtone issue on the iTunes Store. As many of you know, small updates like iOS 8.1.2 have the potential to have a huge impact on performance. iOS 8.0.1, for example, killed Touch ID and cellular data on the iPhone 6. And that’s why we take a look at these updates. We want to provide you with feedback.

After some quick preparation, I installed Apple’s brand new iOS 8.1.2 update in an effort to provide iPhone and iPad users with some initial impressions of Apple’s new software. These impressions don’t serve as a final review but they will help those of you who are straddling the fence about whether to install the company’s latest iOS 8 upgrade.

Here are my early impressions of the iOS 8.1.2 update for iPad mini and more specifically, the iPad mini 2 (second-gen).

iOS 8.1.2 Installation

After successfully installing the iOS 8.1.2 update on the iPhone 6, iPhone 5 and iPad Air, I went into the iPad mini iOS 8.1.2 installation process without any fear. Smaller iOS updates like iOS 8.1.2 tend not to cause major installation issues simply because there aren’t millions upon millions of people trying to install all at once.

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I was able to get the iOS 8.1.2 update up and running on the iPad mini in about 10 minutes or so. The update is extremely small, right around 20MB, so it shouldn’t take you very long to get it up and running provided you’re on a fast internet connection.

Even with the small size of the update, I still recommend setting aside some time for the iOS 8.1.2 upgrade to download and install, especially if you’re installing over a slower Wi-Fi connection. You never know what you might run into during the installation process. You shouldn’t anticipate any problems but there’s always a chance something could go wrong.

If your installation does present problems, do a hard reset. That is to say, hold down the home button and power button for a good 10 seconds until it reboots. That should solve your installation problem.

iOS 8.1.2 on iPad mini 2 Performance

Over the last 24 hours, I’ve spent a ton of time with iOS 8.1.2 on iPad mini 2. Before getting into the early review and my impressions, I should note that mileage is going to vary from device to device, person to person. That is to say, I probably don’t have the same apps installed and there’s a chance that I use Google Chrome, watch more videos, or bounce around the home screen more than you do. So, consider this a general guide as you try to decide whether iOS 8.1.2 is worth installing on your iPad mini.

Apps

Often, my app experience falls apart after a major update like iOS 8. Not the case this time around though. Some of the credit goes to Apple and its beta program, a lot of the credit goes to developers that have clearly worked hard to deliver a solid experience post-iOS 8 release. A steady flow of compatibility updates and bug fixes have ensured a smooth transition.

So far, all of my 50+ applications on the iPad mini 2 are working fine. Some of my primary applications like Google Hangouts, Twitter, Instagram, Asana, Slack are all doing fine. Even Netflix, Google Chrome, and Facebook, apps that I’ve had problems with in the past, are working perfectly after making the move to iOS 8.1.2.

Of course, there’s always a chance app performance will decline in the hours, days and weeks after an iOS update’s release. That said, I’m pretty confident in iOS 8.1.2 given the experience I had in iOS 8.1.1 and below. If you are experiencing issues with iOS 8.1.2 or another iOS 8 update, you should consider installing the latest bug fix updates. They will almost certainly help squash bugs that you’re seeing. If not, contact the developer and tell them about your experience.

iOS 8.1.2 Battery Life

I was getting solid battery life on the iPad mini 2 with iOS 7 on board and that hasn’t changed with iOS 8 on board. All along, battery life has been extremely solid and iOS 8.1.2 doesn’t seem to make any noticeable impact on performance. That is to say that after 12 hours, I haven’t noticed any issues.

I’ve only been able to spend about 10 or so hours with the software and that means that I can’t draw any long term conclusions about its battery life. What I can tell you though is that so far, the update is performing admirably. I haven’t noticed any weird battery drain, I haven’t encountered any slow charging problems and standby mode is still holding up nicely.

When an iOS update comes with major battery life issues, they’re exposed almost immediately. So, I’m pretty confident that the iOS 8.1.2 update does not come with any major battery life problems on board. Like anything though, performance is going to vary from person to person.

iOS updates like iOS 8.1.2 aren’t supposed to bring battery life problems to the iPhone or iPad. Typically, bad battery life is caused by third-party apps or by users themselves. I’ve outlined a number of strategies to get better battery life inside iOS 8 and the same advice applies to Apple’s latest iOS 8.1.2 update. Have a look at those if you install iOS 8.1.2 and you start noticing issues on the iPad mini.

Wi-Fi, Cellular Data & Bluetooth

I own a 4G LTE version of the iPad mini that I use on AT&T’s network. So far, AT&T’s network is offering the same quality speeds that I’ve grown accustomed to over the past year. They’re fast and better yet, the network is extremely reliable. I haven’t noticed any drops. Same goes for Wi-Fi. It delivers excellent performance after the iOS 8.1.2 update.

Bluetooth, a feature that I’ve had problems with in the past, is also holding up well. I’ve been able to connect to all of my Bluetooth devices with ease without any sort of problem. This has been consistent throughout my experience with Apple’s new operating system and I don’t expect any massive problems to arrive in the day ahead.

If you do happen to encounter issues with these connections after getting the iOS 8.1.2 update on board, I advise you to take a look at these potential fixes. They might get rid of them. Just remember, iOS fixes aren’t guaranteed to work for everyone so while they might work for a friend or family member, they may not solve your problems.

Bugs & Issues

My iOS 8 experience on the iPad has been virtually bug-free. While I’ve noticed an assortment of bugs on the iPhone, I haven’t stumbled into any noticeable issues on Apple’s slates. That goes for the iPad mini 2 which currently delivers an outstanding performance with iOS 8.1.2 on board.

So far, I haven’t run into any noticeable bugs or problems though that doesn’t mean that there aren’t any bugs or problems on board. It just means that in my 10 or so hours with the update, I haven’t discovered any.

iOS bugs tend to stay hidden for days, sometimes weeks, before they decide to pop up. So while I’m not experiencing any issues right now, I could run into some issues in the days and weeks ahead.

If you’re struggling on iOS 8.1.1 or below, or you’re having issues with iOS 8.1.2, have a look at our fixes for common iPad Air problems. They might help iron out your problems.

Speed

The iPad mini 2 is still extremely fast with iOS 8.1.2 on board. Animations are fluid, transitions are snappy, and I’ve yet to encounter any general sluggishness, something that tends to pop up after an iOS upgrade. Overall, iOS 8 has treated the iPad mini 2 well and my guess is that that will continue as we push further away from the iOS 8.1.2 release.

Should You Install iOS 8.1.2?

Those of you that are experiencing issues with iOS 8.1.1 or below should certainly think about upgrading to the iOS 8.1.2 update today. It doesn’t come with an extensive list of bug fixes but there’s a very good chance that the update will fix issues that aren’t listed on the change log. I’ve had this happen to me after numerous iOS updates.

If you’re not having any problems, my advice is to wait a few days for the smoke to settle and then come to a decision. This is a small update and you should not be in any sort of a rush to install it. Take your time, gather as much feedback as you can, and then make your move. It’s as simple as that.

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iOS 8.1.2 on iPad mini 2: Impressions & Performance is a post by Adam Mills from Gotta Be Mobile.

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Game of Thrones Game Released for iPhone and Android

GottaBeMobile - Wed, 12/10/2014 - 18:39

Game of Thrones Game Released for iPhone and Android is a post by Cory Gunther from Gotta Be Mobile.

Winter is here, and so is the new Game of Thrones game and app for Android and iOS. Fans of the extremely popular hit HBO TV show can look forward to more series coming soon, as the first episode arrived today. This morning TellTale Games has released the first of many episodes of the new Game of Thrones game for Android, and it’s one worth checking out.

TellTale Games released a popular series of games for the hit show The Walking Dead, and the same is here for all those Westeros fans waiting for season five of Game of Thrones.

Read: The Walking Dead Episode 4 Now Available

Game of Thrones took the internet and TV world by storm years ago and continues to be an extremely popular show for many reasons. With lots of killing, an addicting storyline, and much more as a few of those reasons, and now you can enjoy all of that on Android smartphones and tablets. Read on for more details regarding Game of Thrones Episode 1 for Android.

The hit show, based on the best-seller books by George R. R. Martin, is continued in this game and follows the plot of the show quite closely. Users will be able to take on the role and decision making of House Forrester, and kicks off between seasons three and five. Meaning those that haven’t caught up with all the episodes may want to hold off before downloading this impressive looking mobile game.

TellTale Games delivers voice-overs from several key and popular characters in the television series, mainly Peter Dinklage, but also Lena Heady, and Natalie Dormer to name a few. It’s more of a adventure game where you’ll take on the role of the noble family loyal to Winterfell, and what remains of house Stark. It looks quite promising, and here’s the release trailer.

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It starts off as Game of Thrones Episode 1: Iron from Ice and is the the first installment in the six-episode series starting of at $4.99 today on the Google Play Store.

Most likely the game will remain at this price throughout all six episodes in the series, and continue to follow along with the hit TV show as Season 5 kicks off, and anything else that comes at a later date. Those who’ve read the books have a small idea of what’s coming, but keep it a secret as we don’t want any spoilers.

The game has stunning graphics, if you didn’t notice from the clip above, and has very life-like animations to go along with the official voice-overs and more. The publisher mentions that not all smartphones or tablets are capable of handling the game, while others may experience lag or glitches if you aren’t running on newer hardware.

In fact, the Galaxy Tab 3 and the Droid RAZR are currently not supported, and older devices like the Galaxy S2 may have a hard time with it. TellTale Games recommends smartphones or tablets with at least 1GB of RAM, and preferably devices with a quad-core processor or the new Tegra Note 4. Those with any decent smartphone released over the past 12-18 months should be fine, but it’s worth mentioning before you fork out the $4.99 asking price for Episode 1.

Reviews say the pace of the game is quite slow, but things are just getting started in what remains of the Stark House. It is also available on iTunes for the iPhone and iPad.

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Game of Thrones Game Released for iPhone and Android is a post by Cory Gunther from Gotta Be Mobile.

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Top 5 iPhone 5s Alternatives [December, 2014]

GottaBeMobile - Wed, 12/10/2014 - 00:22

Top 5 iPhone 5s Alternatives [December, 2014] is a post by Adam Mills from Gotta Be Mobile.

Apple’s iPhone 5s is no longer the company’s flagship but that doesn’t mean that it’s no longer a top smartphone. It’s a little older, sure, but thanks to iOS 8 and a cheaper price tag, the iPhone 5s is still a viable option for a lot of people. That said, there are some iPhone 5s alternatives that we think you should look at before taking the plunge with Apple’s $99 iPhone 5s.

Last year, Apple took the stage in September and announced the iPhone 5s, a replacement for the iPhone 5s. For a year, the device served as the company’s flagship $199.99 model and it served as one of the top smartphones on the market. With the arrival of the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, the iPhone 5s isn’t Apple’s top option but it’s still an extremely tempting phone.

Not only is it running Apple’s new iOS 8 update, it’s also much cheaper than it once was. Apple is selling the iPhone 5s for $99 on-contract and we’ve seen iPhone 5s deals drop the price down. This is a great smartphone and it’s one that you should take a look at if you’re in the hunt. There are some devices that we think you absolutely must take a look at before settling in with Apple’s flagship from last year.

We are constantly bombarded with questions about iPhone 5s alternatives to look at. There are a number of different devices that we could recommend as the smartphone market is full of solid big screen choices but we want to narrow things down a bit and take a look at what we consider the top five iPhone 5s competitors available right now.

These devices represent the devices that we’d recommend to friends and family. And while our list may differ from yours, these are the devices that Gotta Be Mobile editors have selected for recognition this month. We feel like the devices listed here deliver the best, all-around package for this month and this month alone.

With that in mind, here are the five iPhone 5s alternatives for December, 2014.

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.gbmslideshow { border-width: 0px; } #gbmslideshow { border-width: 0px; } Samsung Galaxy S51 / 5

The Samsung Galaxy S5, like the iPhone 5s, is getting older. And like the iPhone 5s, the Samsung Galaxy S5 remains a solid option, especially now that its gotten its upgrade to Android 5.0 Lollipop.

Samsung's Galaxy S5 emerged several months after the iPhone 5s release date with high-end features and a new design in tow. It's one of our favorite Android devices of 2014 and it's a device that we think prospective iPhone 5s buyers will want to look it. Why? Simple. Cheap price tag, fantastic hardware, and software that's moving up to Google's latest and greatest operating system.

This is an excellent smartphone for the price and it's one that we think you really need to weigh against the iPhone 5s. They're comparable and who know, you might just like the Samsung Galaxy S5 better. Take a look before diving in with Apple's former flagship this month.

1 / 5

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Top 5 iPhone 5s Alternatives [December, 2014] is a post by Adam Mills from Gotta Be Mobile.

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iOS 8.1.2 on iPhone 5: Impressions & Performance

GottaBeMobile - Tue, 12/09/2014 - 23:16

iOS 8.1.2 on iPhone 5: Impressions & Performance is a post by Adam Mills from Gotta Be Mobile.

Apple’s latest iOS 8 update isn’t the iOS 8.2 update that it put into beta a few weeks back. Instead, it’s an iOS 8.1.2 update that’s aimed at some of the iOS 8 problems that iPhone and iPad users have faced in the weeks after its release. With the iOS 8.1.2 release here, we take a look at how the iOS 8.1.2 update is performing on iPhone 5. This is our early iPhone 5 iOS 8.1.1 review.

Back in September, Apple released an iOS 8.0 update to replace last year’s massive iOS 7 upgrade. iOS 8 did not bring sweeping changes to the iOS operating system for iPhone and iPad. Instead, it built on what the iOS 7 update left behind delivering some brand new features of its own including massive changes to the camera app and the Messages app.

Apple’s iOS 8 update also delivered a number of iOS 8 problems, problems that Apple’s been trying to fix for several months now. First, it rolled out an iOS 8.0.1 update for the iPhone and iPad. A day later, the company pushed out iOS 8.0.2 to fix iOS 8.0.1 problems. A few weeks later, the company shifted to the iOS 8.1 update. A few weeks after that, iPhone and iPad users moved to iOS 8.1.1.

Today, Apple replaced the iOS 8.1.1 update with a new iOS 8.1.2 update. The iOS 8.1.2 update is small and delivers fixes including one for a ringtone issue on the iTunes Store. As many of you know, small updates like iOS 8.1.2 have the potential to have a huge impact on performance. iOS 8.0.1, for example, killed Touch ID and cellular data on the iPhone 6. And that’s why we take a look at these updates. We want to provide you with feedback.

After some quick preparation, I installed Apple’s brand new iOS 8.1.2 update in an effort to provide iPhone and iPad users with some initial impressions of Apple’s new software. These impressions don’t serve as a final review but they will help those of you who are straddling the fence about whether to install the company’s latest iOS 8 upgrade.

Here are my early impressions of the iOS 8.1.2 update for iPhone 5.

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I went into the iOS 8.1.2 installation feeling very confident, especially after I successfully installed the software on my iPhone 6 and iPad Air. Incremental iOS updates tend to pose little threat when it comes to widespread installation problems so I wasn’t surprised that the iOS 8.1.2 iPhone 5 installation process went pretty smooth.

I ran into another verification issue on the iPhone 5 though the snag only delayed the process for a few seconds. Overall, the installation process took in and around 10 to 12 minutes of my time, which, isn’t a lot. The update isn’t very big, about 20MB in size, small for an iOS update. So I can’t see the process taking long at all, even on slow connections.

I still recommend setting aside some time for the update to download and install, especially if you’re installing over a slower Wi-Fi connection. You never know what you might run into. Oh, and if your installation gets fouled up, do a hard reset. That is to say, hold down the home button and power button for a good 10 seconds until it reboots. That should solve your installation problem.

iOS 8.1.2 on iPhone 5 Performance

Today, I’ve spent a ton of time with iOS 8.1.2 on iPhone 5. Before getting into the early review and my impressions, I should note that mileage is going to vary from device to device, person to person. That is to say, I probably don’t have the same apps installed and there’s a chance that I use Google Chrome, LTE, or my home screen more than you do. So, consider this a general guide as you try to decide whether iOS 8.1.2 is worth installing on your aging iPhone 5.

Apps

App performance on the iPhone 5 has been excellent over the course of the last two months. While some of the credit should go to Apple and its iOS 8 update process (which has included several beta upgrades), most of the credit should go to the third-party app developers that have been hard at work on iOS 8 compatibility updates and bug fixes for iOS 8 problems.

So far, so good with iOS 8.1.2. Apps are working fine. Google Hangouts, Twitter, Instagram, Asana, Slack, all key apps on my iPhone 5, are performing well after the iOS 8.1.2 upgrade. I have around 50 or so apps on my iPhone 5 and not one of them has acted up after the iOS 8.1.2 upgrade. Even problematic apps like Facebook and Google Chrome are behaving.

As I’ve noted many times, there’s a chance that app performance will decline in the hours, days and weeks after the iOS 8.1.2 release. That said, I’m pretty confident in iOS 8.1.2. If you are experiencing issues with iOS 8.1.2 or another iOS 8 update, you should consider installing the latest bug fix updates. They will almost certainly help your cause.

iOS 8.1.2 Battery Life

I’ve owned the iPhone 5 for more than two years now and I’ve never run into any significant battery life problems. The streak continues with Apple’s iOS 8.1.2 update. Or so it would seem.

I’ve only been able to spend a few hours with the iOS 8.1.2 update for iPhone 5 so I can’t draw any big conclusions yet. But what I can tell you is that the battery life isn’t acting up. The device is still holding down a fantastic charge, even in standby mode, and I’ve yet to notice any slow charging problems, something that some owners have run into as the device has gotten older.

Historically, major battery drain issues have revealed themselves in the hours after release so I’m pretty confident that my iPhone 5 battery life is going to remain solid moving forward.

iOS updates like iOS 8.1.2 aren’t supposed to bring battery life problems to the iPhone. Typically, bad battery life is caused by third-party apps or by users themselves. I’ve outlined a number of strategies to get better battery life inside iOS 8 and the same advice applies to Apple’s latest iOS 8.1.2 update. Have a look at those if you install iOS 8.1.2 and you start noticing issues on your iPhone 5.

Wi-Fi, Cellular Data & Bluetooth

Wi-Fi, AT&T’s 4G LTE network and Bluetooth connectivity all remain solid with iOS 8.1.2 on board. This isn’t too surprising considering the fact that they were all stable with iOS 8.1.1 on board but it’s nice to see the experience stay the same. It’s also nice because I’ve heard a number of complaints from iPhone 5 users regarding all three of these. My hope is iOS 8.1.2 solves the problems but there’s no guarantee.

If you’re having issues with these connections after getting the iOS 8.1.2 update on board, I advise you to take a look at these potential fixes. They might dislodge your issues. Just keep in mind, iOS fixes aren’t guaranteed to work for everyone so while they might work for a friend or family member, they may not solve your problems.

Bugs & Issues

As iPhones get older, they tend to hit some bumps in the road. My iPhone 3GS was nearly unusable after I upgraded to iOS 6. The iPhone 5 may have found the fountain of youth because its software is still extremely stable.

iOS 8.1.1 was a very stable update, the most stable out of all the iOS 8 updates, and iOS 8.1.2 keeps the trend going. I’ve yet to encounter any headaches during my time with the new upgrade though that doesn’t mean that there aren’t any iOS 8 bugs on board. It just means that I haven’t noticed them in a few hours of use.

Bugs tend to stay hidden for days, sometimes weeks, before they pop up. So while I’m not experiencing any issues right now, I could run into some issues in the days and weeks ahead. I’m pretty confident though. iOS 8.1.1 was very solid and iOS 8.1.2 feels that way too.

If you’re struggling on iOS 8.1.1 or below, and you’re not yet sure about iOS 8.1.2, have a look at our fixes for common iPhone 6 problems. They might help iron out your problems.

Speed

After the iOS 8.1 update, I noticed a tremendous slowdown. Animations weren’t as snappy, transitions were sluggish and I encounter a ton of random lockups, short freezes and slow down after making the move to the bug fix update. It was disappointing given how good the iOS 8.0.2 and iOS 8.0 updates were. iOS 8.1.1 didn’t help.

I’ve noticed some slowdown in these areas after installing iOS 8.1.2 but it’s not as prevalent as it was in iOS 8.1.1. New updates can be deceiving though and it’s possible that things will get worse as time goes on. One thing I can tell you is that the speed has not dramatically improved. There’s still a sense of sluggishness that wasn’t there before the arrival of iOS 8.1.

I’ve spoken to some other iPhone 5 users who are experiencing something similar and I’ve also talked to some that aren’t seeing the same issues. I’m not sure what’s going on but it might be time for me to perform a factory reset and go back to square one. If things don’t improve, I might just do that.

Should You Install iOS 8.1.2?

If you’re dealing with major iOS 8 problems and you can’t find a solution, iOS 8.1.2 is probably worth a shot. It comes with bug fixes and there’s always the potential for it to solve issues that aren’t listed on the change log.

If you’re not having problems, my advice is to wait it out. There’s no rush to make a move and often it’s best to just sit back, survey the scene and gather as much feedback as possible. The smoke around these updates typically settles are a week or so so if you’re having a good experience on iOS 8.1.1 or below, you might want to hold off and see where I’m at later this month.

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iOS 8.1.2 on iPhone 5: Impressions & Performance is a post by Adam Mills from Gotta Be Mobile.

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iOS 8.2 Release Date: What Not to Expect

GottaBeMobile - Tue, 12/09/2014 - 18:07

iOS 8.2 Release Date: What Not to Expect is a post by Adam Mills from Gotta Be Mobile.

Weeks ago, Apple rolled out the upcoming iOS 8.2 update for iPhone and iPad into its beta program ahead of a public release. At some point, the update will arrive to replace iOS 8.1 and with iOS 8.1.1 problems swirling around, iPhone and iPad users are curious about when the roll out will take place. Here, we want to help set iOS 8.2 release date expectations for those dealing with iOS 8 issues as we explore Apple’s next big update.

The iOS 8.0 update was first released to the public in September alongside the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. The update, which replaces iOS 7, is not a huge jump from last year’s operating system. Instead, iOS 8 builds on the foundation left behind by last year’s changes adding new features, enhancements, fixes, and more to owners of select iPhones and iPads.

In addition to these features, the iOS 8 update also delivered a series of iOS 8 problems to iPhone and iPad users. Over the past two and a half months, Apple’s worked to fix those iOS 8 problems through a series of updates. First, we saw iOS 8.0.1. Next, it was iOS 8.0.2 and iOS 8.1. Then, last month, Apple pushed out iOS 8.1.1.

iOS 8.1.1 is still Apple’s current version of iOS 8 though it appears that the company will, at some point, replace it with another version of iOS 8. Weeks ago, Apple quietly released the iOS 8.2 update into its beta program for testing purposes. It’s an interesting development given that we didn’t see an iOS 7.2 update arrive ahead of iOS 8.

With interest in Apple’s iOS 8.2 update for iPhone and iPad rising, and an iOS 8.1.2 update now available, we want to take a look at what we don’t expect from the iOS 8.2 release date including a look at the release itself and the features that iOS 8.2 may not bring to owners of iOS 8 powered devices. Here’s what not to expect from Apple’s upcoming iOS 8.2 release date.

iOS 8.2 Release Date This Year

The first thing you should not expect from the iOS 8.2 release date for iPhone and iPad is a release this year. It’s clear, at least to us, that the update is heavily tied into Apple’s upcoming Apple Watch release. The update landed alongside an Apple Watch API for developers. Apple will most likely release this update ahead of the Apple Watch release but we’d be surprised if it released it several months ahead of its new hardware.

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The Apple Watch release date is confirmed for early 2015 and is rumored for the spring. The company typically rolls out software updates a few days before new hardware arrives (see: iOS 8.0 and the iPhone 6 and iOS 8.1 and the iPad Air 2) and we don’t expect anything different here. Remember, Apple’s iOS updates that land in beta tend to stay in the beta process for a number of weeks, especially bigger updates like iOS 8.2.

With the holidays coming up and with iOS 8.1.2 now available on the iPhone and iPad, we simply don’t see Apple releasing any new software in December. Look for the beta process to carry over into next year as Apple prepares for the arrival of its brand new hardware.

Tons of New Features

Do not expect iOS 8.2 to deliver a ton of new features. The iOS 8.2 update will be a crucial upgrade because it should deliver Apple Watch support to older devices. We don’t expect much beyond that though. Bug fixes, security upgrades and maybe some enhancements but don’t expect the update to introduce tons of new features that reshape the iOS 8 update.

Those looking for a huge upgrade to iOS and iOS 8 will want to keep an eye on iOS 9, the update that will reportedly arrive to replace the iOS 8 update sometime next year. Rumors also indicate that Apple’s planning an iOS 8.3 update for next year though specific details about the iOS 8.3 release remain shrouded in mystery.

No iOS 8 Problems

Do not expect this update to cure every single iOS 8 problem that’s emerged over the course of the last couple of months. iOS 8.2 will almost certainly come with bug fixes to help stabilize the software but it won’t fix everything. iOS updates, even massive bug fixers like iOS 8.1, never do. Bugs will linger all the way up until the release of iOS 9 when even more bugs will emerge. It’s a cycle that you need to be aware of.

Apple’s updates that pass through the beta program tend to be more stable than updates that don’t. So we’re expecting iOS 8.2 to come out of the beta program without any major issues that need immediate attention. That said, you’ll still want to prepare as though it will deliver some smaller problems to your iPhone or iPad.

Our list of common iOS 8.1.1 problems and fixes is a great starting point and it will help you prepare. Most of you won’t encounter any serious issues with iOS 8.2. But if you do, this list of fixes could come in handy.

No Need to Be Prepared

While iOS 8.2 should be a smaller update than the likes of iOS 8.0, don’t expect to be able to get away with not preparing for its arrival. The rules that we detailed of the iOS 8.1.1 release still apply. The more prepared you are, the better off you’ll be post update.

Point is, don’t brush iOS 8.2 off just because it’s not a major update like an iOS 8 or iOS 9. There is still a whole lot of potential for this update to cause problems.

Major Installation Issues

We do not expect to see the same widespread installation issues that plagued the iOS 8.0 upgrade. Apple’s servers tend to get slammed on the release day for  major iOS updates but rarely, if ever, do they get slammed during the release of an incremental iOS update. iOS 8.2 is a larger incremental upgrade to iOS 8 but it’s still not going to garner the same kind of attention from owners of older devices.

Updates like iOS 8.2 are typically smooth sailing for iPhone and iPad users. Even iOS 8.1?s installation process was pretty reasonable. So don’t go into the iOS 8.2 release date thinking you’re going to run into a zillion problems right off the bat on day one. Instead, you should be able to get the software on board in a sane amount of time.

Surprises

Do not expect many, if any, iOS 8.2 release surprises. What we mean by that is, don’t expect Apple to keep a ton of iOS 8.2 features out of view during the beta. Don’t expect Apple to release the update on a weekend or in the evening in the United States. Don’t expect to fix every single iOS 8 bug. Don’t expect the update to be perfect. We don’t expect Apple to stray too far from the script.

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iOS 8.2 Release Date: What Not to Expect is a post by Adam Mills from Gotta Be Mobile.

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How to Put Movies onto Your iPad Without iTunes

GottaBeMobile - Tue, 12/09/2014 - 18:02

How to Put Movies onto Your iPad Without iTunes is a post by Craig Lloyd from Gotta Be Mobile.

The iPad is a great movie-watching device while traveling, but if you’re not a big fan of iTunes, here are some methods for getting movies onto your iPad without using Apple software.

iTunes isn’t terrible by any means, but it does slow down the process of putting movies onto your iPad. First you have to convert them into a format that Apple can recognize, if they aren’t already. Then you have to import them into your iTunes library, and finally you can sync them to your iPad.

There are methods that you can use that completely avoid iTunes, and while the iPad can only play certain video file types, you can download and install video players on your iPad that will play any file type you throw at it, getting rid of the need to convert movies to the correct file type in the first place.

There are a few methods you can use in order to get movies onto your iPad without using iTunes, some of which take a bit longer, while others involve using third-party software to quickly copy and paste movies to your iPad using the device’s file system.

Here’s how to transfer movies to your iPad without using iTunes.

Using a Cloud Storage Service

Perhaps the easiest way to put movies onto your iPad without using iTunes is by using Dropbox, Google Drive or other cloud storage service. However, it’s also a method that takes the most time.

This method requires you to have the app of the cloud storage service on your iPad, so if you use Dropbox, be sure to download and install the Dropbox app from the iTunes App Store. Furthermore, you can download and install the desktop app on your computer. Otherwise, you’ll be using the web interface.

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To use cloud storage to transfer a movie to your iPad, simply just copy and paste the movie file into your Dropbox folder on your computer. Depending on the file size and the speed of your internet connection, the movie could take a few minutes to a few hours to sync to Dropbox.

Once it’s synced, you’ll then be able to access it in the Dropbox app on your iPad. From there, you either watch it directly in the Dropbox app or watch it in the Videos app on your iPad.

To watch the movie directly in the Dropbox app, you can begin playing it in the app if you have an internet connection. Otherwise, you’ll need to tap on the star icon in the upper-right corner and save the movie to the Dropbox app in order to watch it offline.

If you want to export the movie to your iPad and watch it in the Videos app on your iPad, you’ll need to tap on the Share icon in the upper-right corner and then tap on Save Video.

Using Third-Party Software

Perhaps the quickest and easiest way to get movies onto your iPad without using iTunes is taking advantage of some third-party software. Personally, I like iExplorer, which lets you view your iPad’s file system and add files to it if need be.

However, before messing with iExplorer, you’ll need to download a third-party video player. We highly recommend Player Xtreme HD, which is free in the App Store, and we’ll be using it for this tutorial.

After downloading and installing iExplorer (as well as Player Xtreme HD), plug in your iPad to your computer and fire up iExplorer. It should automatically detect your iPad.

Click on Photos & Videos, which will take you to a list of your iPad’s file system, similar to that on your computer, so you should be fairly familiar with how it works. From here, we’re going to drag and drop movie files into the file system so that you can watch them on your iPad.

Double click on Apps and you’ll be greeted with a list of apps that you have installed on your iPad. Next, scroll down and find PlayerXtreme. Click on the arrow just to the right of it and you’ll see a folder called Documents.

From here, drag and drop any movie file into this folder. Give iExplorer some time to transfer the movie. After it’s done, open up Player Xtreme HD on your iPad and you should see the movie appear in the app, from which you can begin playing it on your iPad.

You might be asking, “How is this any quicker and easier than just using iTunes?” That’s a valid question, and at times it’s not any quicker or easier, but if all of your movies are in a format that iTunes and your iPad don’t recognize, using iExplorer and Player Xtreme HD is the way to go, as there’s no need to convert your movies to an iPad-friendly format.

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How to Put Movies onto Your iPad Without iTunes is a post by Craig Lloyd from Gotta Be Mobile.

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7 Phones You Shouldn’t Buy Right Now (2014)

GottaBeMobile - Tue, 12/09/2014 - 00:54

7 Phones You Shouldn’t Buy Right Now (2014) is a post by Adam Mills from Gotta Be Mobile.

With most big name smartphone releases now behind us, consumers looking for a new smartphone in the next few months will have to make do. Fortunately, the smartphone market is chock full of solid options including the iPhone 6, Samsung Galaxy Note 4 and LG G3. There are, however, some devices you should avoid and here, we take a look at seven phones you shouldn’t buy right now.

Over the last 11 months, we’ve seen smartphone manufacturers release a number of big time smartphones. Many of the devices that arrived in 2014 are considered amongst the best smartphones on the planet and those looking for a new device in December and early 2015 won’t have a hard time tracking down a wealth of options.

Early on in the year, it was the Samsung Galaxy S5 and HTC One M8 that tempted consumers around the world. More recently, its been devices like the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, LG G3, Samsung Galaxy Note 4, and Moto X that have attempted to lure in those looking to buy a new phone. While there are many devices we think you should have you eyes on, there are plenty of others that we think you should avoid for one reason or another.

We are constantly bombarded with questions about the best phones money can buy. We answered that question already. Today, we want to take a look at the smartphones that you should avoid. Most of them are past their prime, others simply aren’t that good of a deal.

These devices represent the devices that we would not recommend to friends and family. And while our list may differ from yours, these are the devices that Gotta Be Mobile editors have selected for recognition right now. We feel like the devices listed here are worth avoiding as you embark on your search for your next smartphone

With that in mind, here are seven smartphones you shouldn’t buy right now.

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.gbmslideshow { border-width: 0px; } #gbmslideshow { border-width: 0px; } Nexus 41 / 7

Google's Nexus 4 recently celebrated its two year birthday. And while Google itself no longer sells the Nexus 4, it can still be bought from third-party retailers. The Nexus 4 is a good phone and it just got upgraded to Android 5.0 Lollipop but there are a few reasons why you might want to think about avoiding it.

First, it doesn't come with LTE. For many people, especially those of you that are accostomed to LTE, that's going to be a deal breaker. Even the most budget phones from 2014 come with LTE. It's an essential feature and one that most of you will want from your next device.

The biggest reason though is that the Nexus 4 is probably at the end of the road in terms of software updates. Nexus devices typically get 18-24 months of software support which means that Android 5.0 Lollipop is probably its last. Yes, you can go the unofficial route and install unofficial ROMs but a lot of people shouldn't do that. Why? Simple.

You can snag a newer, better Nexus 5. Like the Nexus 4 it comes with Android 5.0 Lollipop. Unlike the Nexus 4, it still has a year of software support left and it comes with LTE. If you're willing to shell out a little more, you can also look at the new Nexus 6 from Google and Motorola.

The Nexus 4 is not a sound investment and it's a device that we think you should avoid going forward.

1 / 7

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7 Phones You Shouldn’t Buy Right Now (2014) is a post by Adam Mills from Gotta Be Mobile.

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Nexus 6 Release Expands to More US Carriers

GottaBeMobile - Tue, 12/09/2014 - 00:03

Nexus 6 Release Expands to More US Carriers is a post by Cory Gunther from Gotta Be Mobile.

Google’s impressive new Android 5.0 Lollipop powered Nexus 6 has been available in the United States for a few weeks, and now one more carrier is on board. The general release date was a mystery as Google allowed each major US carrier to release it at will. The launch started off rocky, but over the past few weeks things have calmed down and now one more carrier has the Nexus 6 in stock.

The new Nexus 6 was announced back on October 15th along with the Nexus 9 tablet, a Nexus Player, and the completely redesigned and improved Android 5.0 Lollipop software update. After pre-orders started, Sprint released it first after a delay by T-Mobile, then AT&T, and now it’s available from US Cellular.

Read: Nexus 6 Review

As it stands right now the Nexus 6 is available from Sprint, AT&T, and T-Mobile, and until today there was no word when the other two major US carriers would join in on the fun. Today though, the Nexus 6 in both Blue and the elusive Cloud White color options, as well as 32 and 64GB storage configurations are both available from US Cellular.

When Google announced the Nexus 6 it was a complete shocker that they’d be delivering it to buyers from all five major carriers in the United States. This is the first and only Nexus smartphone to receive such treatment, and marks a first for a Nexus on Verizon Wireless in years.

Consumers were extremely excited about the release and possibilities, but the release date ended up being a bit slower than expected. November 12th was the T-Mobile release date that got delayed, Sprint started offering it on November 14th, and eventually T-Mobile and AT&T followed in their footsteps.

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The Nexus 6 is still not available from Verizon Wireless, and no Verizon Nexus 6 details or release date have been remotely confirmed, or even rumored at this point.

Read: Best Nexus 6 Cases

As we mentioned above, prospective buyers can now get both color options and both storage configurations from US Cellular, making them the only carrier offering both 32GB and 64GB, and the only carrier with the White model. All three others only have blue, and T-Mobile is offering the 64GB online only, with none available in stores.

As you can see from the screenshot above both color and storage options are available. This is good news, however along with it comes bad news. US Cellular is asking a slight price premium on top of the already expensive phone. While it’s $199 on contract, they’re asking $660 for the 32GB model, and $730 for the 64GB version. Compared to $649 and $699 from all others, as well as the Google Play Store.

It’s a bit pricy, but those on US Cellular or wanting the hard to find white version of the Nexus 6 can now get it right from their online website. It’s worth noting that the T-Mobile, Sprint, Motorola.com, and Google Play Store versions are carrier unlocked, and work with any provider (included Verizon) but we’re not sure about US Cellular. It isn’t a typical GSM phone like T-Mobile or AT&T, so we’d advise against buying one for use on another carrier until users know for sure.

As it stands now, the new Nexus 6 is available on four of the five major carriers in the United States. Verizon is the only one not offering Google’s latest flagship phone, not yet at least, and we have no release date in sight. We’ll update once they reveal any release date plans.

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Nexus 6 Release Expands to More US Carriers is a post by Cory Gunther from Gotta Be Mobile.

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8 Exciting Android Smartphones for 2015

GottaBeMobile - Mon, 12/08/2014 - 23:22

8 Exciting Android Smartphones for 2015 is a post by Adam Mills from Gotta Be Mobile.

With 2014 coming to a close, those in the market for a new Android phone this month are going to have to pick from the current crop because companies have exhausted their pipelines for the year and are now looking toward the future. Those who can wait to buy a new Android phone probably have their eye on that future and on the top Android smartphones of 2015.

2014 was a huge year for the world of Android smartphones. Over the past 11 months, we’ve seen a steady stream of fantastic Android smartphones emerge, feeding the appetites of Android smartphone enthusiasts and average consumers alike. Many of these devices find themselves among the top smartphones ever made and more importantly, the top smartphones available right now.

The LG G3 is a device that is considered, by many, to be one of the best Android smartphones on the market. Motorola released two exciting smartphones in the Moto X and Moto G 2014. HTC’s One M8 was a fantastic sequel to last year’s HTC One M7 , the Samsung Galaxy Note 4 and Samsung Galaxy S5 are two of the best flagships Samsung’s ever built, and the Nexus 6 and its massive display fit in nicely with the Nexus 5. Its been a good year to be an Android fan, that’s for sure.

With 2015 fast approaching, we’re starting to hear about some of the Android devices that could emerge to replace the stars of 2014. And while many of these devices remain shrouded in mystery, it’s fairly easy to predict what might be up next for some of these popular Android manufacturers. Here, we take a look at eight Android smartphones we think are the most exciting prospects heading into the new year. These are the devices you’ll want to pay attention to once we turn the page and enter 2015.

Here are the eight most exciting Android smartphones for 2015.

.gbmslideshow { border-width: 0px; } #gbmslideshow { border-width: 0px; } Samsung Galaxy S61 / 8

Samsung Galaxy S6 rumors have already started to swirl as we approach the end of the year and Samsung's usual Q1-Q2 launch window for the Galaxy S series.

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Rumors suggest that the Samsung Galaxy S6 release date could come a little earlier than expected and deliver a device that's built from the ground up as Samsung looks to stifle the woes of its mobile business. While that's not set in stone, the Galaxy S' status as a flagship is not.

The Samsung Galaxy S6 specs are rumored to include a number of new features including a Quad HD display, new design and more. This is what we've come to expect from Samsung and it looks like the company will deliver. With the pressure on Samsung to succeed, we have a feeling that this year's Galaxy S could be a huge departure from the Galaxy S5, similar to what the Galaxy S3 was to the Galaxy S2.

That has us feeling very excited about Samsung's future and the Galaxy S6 should be a device that you keep an eye on as we approach the early part of next year.

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8 Exciting Android Smartphones for 2015 is a post by Adam Mills from Gotta Be Mobile.

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Tech Director Chat #012 – Why do Tech Directors Lock Technology Down?

The Tech Savvy Educator - Mon, 12/08/2014 - 19:38

This is it! We tackle the most asked question by educators and students that have to suffer with restrictions, lock downs, filters, and controls on the technology provided by their school! Prepare for an amazing concise, well reasoned, and perfectly valid……oh heck, who am I kidding. Pete and I futz around with the question for a bit, and come to the stark reality that many Tech Directors face; balancing the needs of the many with the needs of the few. In other words, making sure that technology in a school district is manageable given available tech staff, yet still useful to the students and teachers using the devices for learning. We also answer some questions about upgrading software, Thanksgiving leftovers, and just how many licks it takes to get to the center of a Tootsie Pop.

As always, you can listen to, download, or subscribe to the podcast using this link. Or listen below! Android users, the podcast will soon be available via Stitcher as well for easy subscribing and listening!

Timestamps for this week’s questions:

0:50 How was Thanksgiving break?

1:10 What’s your favorite Thanksgiving leftover?

1:46 What has Pete been up to today?

2:07 What kind of bond financial tool requires a day to create?

4:02 When are we as a district updating to Mac OS X Yosemite?

6:06 How do we handle getting everyone upgraded to Mac OS X Yosemite?

6:54 Ian from Twitter asks, why would a school district not allow you to administer your teacher laptop?

8:36 Why do Tech Directors like to look everything down?

10:27 Ian from Twitter asks, does super strict control over technology to keep old people from breaking it, or students from using it?

13:08 Why would a school district block cameras on devices?

14:53 So some things get blocked because Tech Directors just don’t want students using them?

15:30 Paul wants to know, how do you teach older folks to use a computer?

12:37 So basically, Pete wants to teach people entire technology systems, and Ben wants to teach people the smaller pieces of technology?

12:23 Stump Pete! Scott asks, how many licks does it take to get to the center of a tootsie pop?


Tech Director Chat – Why do Tech Directors Lock Technology Down?

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